Meat Processing in the UK Industry Market Research Report Now Updated by IBISWorld

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Over the next five years to 2017-18, the Meat Processing industry will be hampered by the huge disruption and increasing costs caused by the horsemeat scandal and the overpriced pig meat market and therefore IBISWorld estimates there will be a marginal decrease in industry revenue over the period. For these reasons, industry research firm IBISWorld has updated its report on the Meat Processing industry.

IBISWorld industry market research
The horsemeat scandal puts meat processors under consumer scrutiny

The Meat Processing industry has grown in spurts over the past five years. The industry's principle products – beef, lamb and pig meat – have all suffered from slight declines in consumption over the period, in line with higher prices. A principle trend over the past 20 years has been the preference for poultry over red meat, with poultry consumption doubling and red meat consumption remaining fairly static. Consumers have also been forced to scale back, purchasing lower quality meats in accordance with lower levels of disposable income caused by the recession. This added to the applicability of the shocking news that horse DNA had been discovered in a Tesco Value frozen beef burger product. An investigation by the Food Standards Agency uncovered a wider spread of contaminated produce, with other European countries generating similar results. Although most of the horsemeat sources were found to be domiciled abroad, two members of the UK meat supply chain were raided by the Food Standards Agency and are currently under police investigation on suspicion of introducing horsemeat into the supply chain. According to IBISWorld industry analyst Patrick Ross, “No major UK meat processors were implicated in the horsemeat scandal, but the fallout is expected to have a resounding impact on the industry as a whole”. IBISWorld estimates that industry revenue will grow at a compound annual rate of 3.3% over the five years through 2012-13, to reach £5.65 billion. Industry revenue is expected to decrease by 2.4% over the current year.

Over the next five years, the industry will be hampered by the huge disruptions caused by the horsemeat scandal in the short-term. Ross adds, “Costs stemming from the scandal in the form of more expensive domestic meat inputs, supply chain overhaul and potentially DNA testing to provide assurances will hit hard”. The industry could be hit with regulatory measures from the UK government or the European Union, but changes will have to be made to restore trust nonetheless. The overpriced pig meat market will also weigh heavily on performance. However, the UK economy is expected to recover slowly. This, along with continued population growth and a steadfast tradition in red meat consumption, will spur the industry into climbing out of the quagmire. Scientific influences, including global warming policies and artificial meat research, will begin to capture attention in the industry. IBISWorld estimates that industry revenue will marginally decrease over the five years through 2017-18.

In 2012-13, the four largest meat processors are forecast to account for about 32.5% of total industry revenue giving the Meat Processing industry a medium level of market share concentration. Major companies include Cranswick, Vion Food Group, Hilton Food Group and Foyle Food Group.

For more information on the Meat Processing industry, including latest industry trends, statistics, analysis and market share information, purchase the full report from IBISWorld, the nation’s largest publisher of industry research.

IBISWorld industry Report Key Topics

The Meat Processing industry consists of businesses engaged in slaughtering livestock (except poultry). Participants produce fresh, chilled or frozen meat, as carcasses and cuts. Operations can include the boning, freezing, preserving and packing of meat or manufacturing meals. Additionally, participants supply by-products like rendered lard and tallow, and pulled wool from slaughtered animals.

Industry Performance
Executive Summary
Key External Drivers
Current Performance
Industry Outlook
Industry Life Cycle
Products & Markets
Supply Chain
Products & Services
Major Markets
Globalisation & Trade
Business Locations
Competitive Landscape
Market Share Concentration
Key Success Factors
Cost Structure Benchmarks
Barriers to Entry
Major Companies
Operating Conditions
Capital Intensity
Key Statistics
Industry Data
Annual Change
Key Ratios

About IBISWorld
Recognised as the nation’s most trusted independent source of industry and market research, IBISWorld offers a comprehensive database of unique information and analysis on many UK industries. With an extensive online portfolio, valued for its depth and scope, the company equips clients with the insight necessary to make better business decisions. Headquartered in London, IBISWorld serves a range of business, professional service and government organisations through more than 10 locations worldwide. For more information, visit or call (020) 3008 6568.

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Gavin Smith
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